Delaware Picked No. 4 in Pre-Season CAA Baseball Coaches Poll; Yezzo Named Pre-Season Co-Player of the Year
January 23, 2013
File Photo Courtesy of University of Delaware Media Services
CAA Official Release
RICHMOND, Va. -- The University of Delaware baseball squad, which fell just one game short of claiming a Colonial Athletic Association Championship a year ago, earned a No. 4 spot in the CAA Coaches pre-season poll announced by the league office recently.
Additionally, Blue Hen junior first baseman Jimmy Yezzo (at right) was named CAA Pre-Season Co-Player of the Year along with being named to the 2013 CAA Baseball Pre-Season Team. Hofstra’s Jared Hammer joined Yezzo in sharing the Pre-Season Co-Player of the Year award.
“Jimmy is in good hands to be able to share this award with a very good player in Hammer,” said Delaware head coach Jim Sherman. “I think it is a fair assessment that they are the class of the conference and the vote showed it.”
Yezzo, a junior health behavior science major from Cherry Hill, N.J. (Bishop Eustace), returns as the reigning CAA Baseball Championship’s Most Outstanding Player in addition to a team Most Valuable Player nod after he hit .358 (67-for-187) with a team-high eight home runs and 46 RBI in 50 games.
UNCW, was selected as the favorite to repeat by five league coaches after going 39-23 last year and capturing the CAA regular season and tournament titles and automatic NCAA Tournament Berth. The Seahawks earned five first-place votes and 75 points in thepoll to edge Hofstra, which garnered three first-place votes and 69 points. James Madison was picked third with 62 points while Delaware was ranked fourth with two first-place votes and 57 points.
George Mason was picked No. 5 with 49 points, Old Domions was sixth with 32 points, William & Mary seventh with 30 points, Towson was eighth with 28 points followed by Northeastern (27) and Georgia State (21).
“The first-place votes definitely show that schools recognize we are going to be a strong team this year,” said Sherman. “Some guys in this business like to be picked in the middle of the pack, but I like to be more of the king dog.”
Sherman, in his 13th season leading the Blue Hens, welcomes back 24 letter winners from last year’s squad that posted an overall record of 31-27 and finished in third place in the CAA standings with a 17-13 mark. The Hens entered the CAA Baseball Championships as the No. 3 seed and marched through the tournament before falling to UNCW in the championship game.
Joining Yezzo with CAA pre-season accolades are; senior infielder DJ Long, junior starting right-handed pitcher Chad Kuhl and sophomore catcher Ty Warrington, who were named to the CAA honorable selection team.
“Long, Kuhl and Warrington are tremendous fixtures in our lineup and will be keys for us to be successful this season,” Sherman added. “These guys have put in a lot of hard work on and off the field and these honors show that effort is being noticed by their peers.”
Long (above left), a senior health and physical education major from Millsboro, Del. (Sussex Central HS), returns as a four-year starter this spring to lead the Blue Hens. A career .311 hitter, Long started all 58 games in 2012 and batted .289 with three home runs and 29 runs batted. This is his second-straight CAA preseason honorable mention to go along with freshman All-American honors and CAA All-Rookie laurels during his Delaware career.
Kuhl (at right), a junior communications major from Bear, Del. (Middletown), produced a 5-5 record with one save in 13 starts and two relief appearances last season. The 6-3 right-hander also posted a 4.42 (36 ER/77.1 IP) earned-run average with 86 hits, 36 walks and 64 strikeouts during his sophomore season.
Warrington (below left), a sophomore finance major from Hockessin, Del. (A.I. DuPont), started 44 games behind the dish for the Blue Hens. In his first season with the Blue Hens, Warrington hit .283 (36-for-127) with 15 RBI. Defensively he threw out 47% of stolen base attempts while owning a .987 fielding percentage.
The Blue Hens will kick off the 2013 season with a four-game, three-day trip to Cary, N.C. as the University of Delaware will play Temple, Canisius, La Salle and Albany beginning Friday, February 15 in the Wright State Tournament.
UD will begin its home schedule on Friday, March 1 at 3:30 p.m., as the Blue Hens host Monmouth University in a three-game weekend series at Bob Hannah Stadium.
2013 Colonial Athletic Association Baseball Pre-Season Coaches Poll: 1. UNCW (5 1st Place Votes), 75 points; 2. Hofstra (3), 69; 3. James Madison, 62; 4. DELAWARE (2 1st Place Votes), 57; 5. George Mason, 49; 6. Old Dominion, 32; 7. William & Mary, 30; 8. Towson, 28; 9. Northeastern, 27; 10. Georgia State, 21.
2013 CAA Baseball Pre-Season Team: C - John Puttress (Northeastern); 1B – Jared Hammer (Hofstra); 1B – JIMMY YEZZO (DELAWARE); 2B – Michael Bass (UNCW); SS – Dalton Rouleau (Hofstra); 3B – Ryan Lindermuth (William & Mary); OF – Tyler Molinaro (UNCW); OF – Hunter Ridge (UNCW); UT – Brendan Butler (Towson); DH – Conner Brown (James Madison); SP – Mat Batts (UNCW); SP – Michael Trionfo (Towson); RP – Kelly Secrest (UNCW).
Honorable Mention (players receiving multiple votes): Matt Reistetter, C, Hofstra; TY WARRINGTON, C, DELAWARE; DJ LONG, 2B DELAWARE; Caden Bailey, So., SS, Georgia State; Jason Vosler, 3B, Northeastern; Blaise Fernandez, 3B, George Mason; Ty McFarland, 3B, James Madison; Kenny Jackson, OF, Hofstra; ColeMcInturff, OF, James Madison; Corey Dick, DH, UNCW; CHAD KUHL, SP, DELAWARE; John Tiedemann, SP, Hofstra; John Farrell, RP, William & Mary; Brandon Smith, RP, Old DominionPre-Season Player of the Year: JIMMY YEZZO (DELAWARE) and Jared Hammer (Hofstra)